…never were there such devoted sisters…. I only have brothers so I can’t even imagine what it must be like to have a sister. I always wanted one when I was younger, mainly because my brothers seemed like a pain in the backside a lot of the time (as I’m sure I was to them). Although I love them both dearly, they always had each other and I felt deprived of such a partner in crime. But I guess I’ve also benefitted from never having that kind of competitiveness. This post is pretty much just an excuse to post pictures of a few glamorous famous sisters…
I’m often yapping on about the genius of James Wedge’s photography, but I have been meaning to share this very rare, very precious part of fashion history and of my personal collection for a while now. Wedge is one of those rare Renaissance-man types; successful in every new skill to which he turned his hand. He successfully ran his own boutiques (Countdown and Top Gear), forged a career in photography with no experience or working knowledge (trial and error often creates some of the best works of art) and, initially, he trained and worked as a milliner.
His hats were regularly featured in Vogue in the early to mid Sixties, often teamed with outfits by his friends Marion Foale and Sally Tuffin, and are some of the most perfect examples of mod ‘op-art’ ever created. But they weren’t being produced for long, or in any great quantity, so they are now incredibly rare.
This hat splits me in half. I cannot wear fur. I just can’t. Not particularly morally, I eat meat and wear leather quite happily, but the feel on my skin is like nails down a blackboard. Consequently, a hat made from rabbit fur is a thing of beauty aesthetically but I wouldn’t wear it. Even if I could squish it over my ‘beeg heed’. However, I can’t quite bring myself to sell it just yet. I mean…it’s James Wedge!
Joanna Lumley in her Swinging Sixties modelling days. An unashamedly posh bird who knew how best to work with masses of hair and ‘insufficient flying buttresses‘. I choose my style heroines verrrrrry carefully, you know…
She’s been in two of my favourite cult TV shows of all time (The New Avengers and Sapphire and Steel) and continues to be an elegant, engaging performer and a true lady to this day. I always admire those who broke somewhat pointless social taboos back in the Sixties, and Joanna chose to have her son ‘out of wedlock’ at a time when it would have ruined many a career.
She’s one of those people who just seems to float gracefully above the mêlée of the world below. Elegant, classy and sparky, never a snob or an airhead. She wasn’t drama school trained either, and I often wonder if this makes someone a warmer, more likeable actor (much like the best fashion designers are rarely those propelled from St. Martins each year).
Pattie is shown wearing the ubiquitous scalloped edge trousersuit and Lamborghini. Interestingly named as ‘Georgy Porgy’ in the film. I wonder if that was the original name for the outfit or whether they called it Georgy Porgy as a joke reference to Mr Harrison? Oddly enough, I have greater Ossie-envy for Amanda Lear’s outfits [and, while I'm here, I want her hair!]. And the lucky cow who gets to wear the kicky flared ensemble (Dress of the Year at Bath in 1969 – see below). That’s probably the ultimate Ossie holy grail….for me at any rate.
….In the “those sadly no longer with us category”.
Clark Gable. Not so much for Gone With the Wind services, but for It Happened One Night which is one of my favourite films of all time. The sexual chemistry between Gable and Claudette Colbert is crackling, and it renders him totally irresistable. I was umming and aahhing between Gable and Gregory Peck for the ‘old school’ filmstar Vintage Bloke, but decided Peck (though gorgeous and wonderful in Roman Holiday particularly) was far too clean and smooth looking for my tastes.
Gareth Hunt in The New Avengers. I’ve had a soft spot for poor Gareth Hunt (poor because the man became rhyming slang for something unrepeatable) for years. But seeing him in his youth more recently in The New Avengers. Rowrrrrrrrrr!! He’s a proper blokey bloke, but very sweet with Purdey (the luminous Jo-Lum) and well, it’s inevitable I’d like him isn’t it? He’s so Seventies it hurts!
Marc Bolan. Le sigh. Pretty pretty pretty!! He wore ladies clothes with great aplomb and had the most phenomenal hair. He’s just indescribable, so I’m not going to try…
George Harrison. Seems I chose the right Beatle for my favourite (John Lennon is the only one who has never been my favourite, I think he’s a bit too prickly for me to love him unconditionally). And now he’s sadly left this world, he can’t ruin it all and taint our view of him like Paul and Ringo regularly do. His songs are also my favourite of all Beatles songs, and I think his solo career has been my favourite too. Soulful eyes, beautiful hair and that mystical, serious, quiet persona. If I can still love him after reading Pattie’s autobiography, which is incredible but so sad it can be very hard to read at times, then it must be true love.
Oliver Reed. If I had known Olly in his youth, or at any point quite frankly, I know I couldn’t have put up with him. I’d have probably thumped him one on a regular basis, if he didn’t thump me first, and knowing that he liked his women to have ‘traditional’ values he probably couldn’t have put up with me either. But the man was a walking chunk of sex. If you’ve never quite ‘got’ the Oliver Reed thing, just watch The Assassination Bureau with Diana Rigg. Trust me. I know I still haven’t ever recovered.
I used to be a voracious reader when I was younger. Now I barely seem to have the time, or inclination to get involved in much fiction. But I do have a passion for historical books, biographies, auto-biographies and fashion books (quelle surprise!).
So when Sharon Rose tagged me for a bookworm award, I scanned my room for any books out of my bookcase and found a book which has a bit of each. Pattie Boyd’s autobiography, Wonderful Today. Page 46, sentence 5 and a bit beyond…
Then there was Mr Chow’s restaurant in Knightsbridge; he was going out with Grace Coddington and later married Tina Chow, whom everyone fell in love with. We went to quirky little boutiques, like Granny Takes a Trip, owned by Nigel Waymouth, who was a painter, and John Pearce. They sold paintings, posters and clothes – crushed velvet trousers and fitted jackets with thin arms in wonderful greens and burgundies. Everything was very tight and men wore boots, jackets and shirts with big collars – Regency, almost. There was an amazing number of new shops for men, who were refusing to be like their fathers.
Unusual that it should be a small section without mention of George Harrison, but I figured you’d all appreciate a rare bit of menswear chat on here
I shan’t tag anyone else because there’ll probably be lots of repeats. But if you’re a reader who’d like to do the ‘bookworm’ blog then please do, and link me up if you’re not already on my links.
Is it wrong to worship Dhani Harrison as some kind of reincarnation of his beautiful father? I’ve always resisted before now, because it seemed very, very wrong.
Well, if itwas wrong before I don’t suppose it can be wrong now he’s gone and let himself be photographed AS his beautiful father. Although the supermodel he’s posing with can’t hold a matchstick, let alone a candle, to the magnificent Pattie Boyd. She looks like a prize prat for even trying. But Dhani…..*sigh*….just look at him, let the beauty wash over you and pray that they get around to cloning all the Beatles for every generation.